Are developers heeding our feedback?

There’s alot of chit chat in this forum.

With few exceptions of the ‘gameplay matters most’ variety, it’s fair to say reception from the community has been negative if not downright hostile. Much of the criticism has been leveled at the cartoonish graphics, terrible textures, very poor unit combat mechanics, ridiculous and unrealistic weapon / buildings sizes, etc. The list goes on.

My question is as follows : is there any evidence out there that developers are taking this negative feedback into account and will take active steps to address it?

So far the only evidence I have seen was that Podcast with Adam Isgreen. The impression I got is that the man was defiant, exhausted and frustrated. He basically gave us the tired line around gameplay and readability, begrudgingly conceding there may be some marginal graphical finetuning. His interview however certainly did not give me the impression Relic would be turning the ship around on some very questionable design choices of this game.

I think my question will be important to those who are looking to manage their expectations around the game release. I waited 15 years for the latest instalment in the franchise. If this is indeed the game they intend to release… I’d rather ignore the whole thing and move on to something else. I don’t do online games, sorry.


i think we should give them a chance

they did different interviews regarding the remarks. They continue their work of improvement. No worries.


The first thing you learn as a dev is to not listen to feedback. Listening to feedback from armchair designers is the dumbest thing you can do. Especially from isolated communities that are drawn to your game due to the name recognition rather than the actual project itself.

Instead of writing a rant I’ll let Day9 explain: Feedback is Dumb and It Doesn’t Matter - YouTube


You sound like a developer on said project.


Whatever makes you happy

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I see it oppostite, apart from a few loud negative voices, the feedback is rather positive, eager ly awaiting the beta.

devs will clearly see the criticisms, and decide which of them will be fixed (spoiler: bad graphics wont be fixed because they are as they should be)

The current state was done due to previous interviews with players.

Negative feedback is always voicedloudly in forums, yet positive is seldom. Thats a well established fact and MS will also consider this whenthey analyze these posts.


A lot of negative reviews? What are you talking about? There are 30-50 people dissatisfied with the graphics on this form, is this a significant number in your opinion? This is a negligible percentage of players, and I understand the developers if they ignore them, this is logical, games are not made for 50 people with abstract ideas like “I want historically accurate armor and photorealistic graphics” or “I want 8 German factions” (How as if in the previous parts everything shone with historicism and realism. Hun paladins say hello.). I can guarantee that no one will do this and will not serve this, and I am glad of this, in this case I understand why reading this the developers are sad. I have been reading the forum since the announcement itself, and I see a lot of positive feedback, which means that a lot of people will still be playing the game, and I am sure that much more than in the second part. Don’t like competitive RTS? Are you leaving? The loss is of course “huge”, but we will survive, no one is holding you. I think that Relic knows better how to make RTS, they have a large staff, designers and so on. Do you think they are all idiots? Probably they have in their head how the game should look in the final build and what audience it will cover, if you don’t fall into this audience, then it’s out of luck.


Completely agree especially since we see a lot of posts to wait for the beta and the release. People are generally happy with the game


Yeah, these people disliking the graphics have convinced themselves that they are somehow the majority, while they are actually just a small group but a very loud one.


Games are not made for 50 people, but we’re not talking about 50 people who, at this point, feel dissatisfied with the graphics. It’s probably closer to a few hundred in this Forum alone, just looking at the posts and the polls. The majority of potential AoE IV Players are likely not even in this Forum, but they’ve left their feedback on other platforms like youtube. From the Forum polls it seems that a little more than half the people are not satisfied with the current state of the graphics. Some are more vocal and angry, others more reserved. I’m not saying you’re entirely in the wrong here, I just want to say, get your numbers right, so we can have a reasonable discussion about it. @EgoTonic’s point goes both ways.

And to OP’s original question: Yes, they addressed it as far as I know and are working on it. I’m personally pretty sure that we’ll see some improvements, which will change the sentiment to some degree. Also, the initial negative response from potential players is likely exagerated, as we’re talking about the internet here. People are more likely to overract. Don’t matter much to me anyway, I’ll be waiting to get my hands on it, see how it plays and reserve judgment until then.


I really wish to see a successful AoE4.
But I am just realistic at current state it might not match the expectations of the games market.

Its not about “thing X”, but how people overall are going to perceive the product. The job of a designer should be to identify what might disturb the customer and try to fix it, instead to justify the first best thing that was put together.

Feedback for games is like a snow ball rolling down a hill,
the more the ball is towards the end, the faster and bigger it gets.

Age of Empires 4 development, reminds me quite a lot of Warhammer 40.000: Dawn of War 3 development. Just check this video that was made by Luetin09, an Warhammer universe expert prior to games release.

By Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III also did quite a lot people complain about graphics.
But even more did complain about the gameplay, once more info was available.
And hundreds once the beta was out.

DoW3 has right now over 10.000 negative ratings and did die off very fast after its release. After not even 3 month, it had less people play it, than the first game that was released over 10 years earlier.

The problem I see, they way how Relic do their games, it sounds like they are not using “readability/E-Sports/colourful” as concepts, they are using it as excuses. Concept is an idea or invention to help sell or publicize a commodity, excuse reason or explanation given to justify a fault.
So in the end, even fundamental design mistakes did end up in the game.

Down the line, more and more people complained, a lot of criticism was very legit, while the game in the end did not receive any changes or improvements. So it was dead on arrival.

The way how they addressed the development, did turn away a lot of people.
And considering what we have seen so far, I kind of expect later to see the same articles.


I mean yeah we don’t know how many people like and dislike the graphics, my point is that if you look at the YouTube videos for example then you will see how overwhelmingly positive the reviews and like to dislike ratio are. IMO that would be a lot worse if there really were a big problem with the graphics. Thus I don’t really see how the majority of people does dislike the graphics.


Oh yes, I think you’re certainly right. My point was more directed towards the ratio of people who like or dislike the graphics. There’s certainly a good amount of people who dislike the graphics in it’s current state, but I don’t think that will turn off a majority of players or make or break the game.


Yeah I can agree with that.


Again, AoE online’s cancelation had very little to do with the graphics, why do you insist on using it as a part of your argument when multiple people have shown you it to be false


Relic knows better how to make RTS
Dawn of War 3

Seriously (: D), the game obviously I will judge it when it comes out but the graphics of the units do not like at all from what I have seen now, I hope to change my mind. : D

From what i got is that we got an early look and a large part of the problems brought up were fixed before they were even raised. It takes a while to set up that kind of event and it was prerecorded moths in advance. He stated things have changed colors, arrow size, unit size and i have heard only good things from those who got to play the game early. None of it sounded like you were trying to cover up a crappy product. It will be different from aoe2. The graphics are going in a different direction a long with game play. The good news is if you don’t like it you can still play aoe2. You can still play aoe,3, myth and they are far less popular.

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I think this is a good metric.
If we compare it to the DoW 3 gameplay trailer we see a like:dislike ratio of 2:1 Dawn of War III - First Gameplay Footage - YouTube

Much worse than the AoE 4 ratio of 25:1.


Look guys, it’s not so important how many people post, but how legit their arguments are.

Did anybody here expect AoE Online or DoW3 to be a success?
Any person could see from the very first pictures how wrong they were, but not them.

Again, it’s not about each “detail”, but the end impression as a whole. “Graphics” are one part of many. But the more each thing looks odd, the less chances are people are going to like the result

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